History, nature and craftsmanship come alive in the heart of Chikuho
Explore the historical mining town of Tagawa City
The origin of one of Japan’s best-loved mining songs, Tagawa City has been at the center of the Chikuho area’s cultural and economic life as an important mining town since the1945. Mt. Kawara, the setting of Hiroyuki Itsuki’s classic novel Seishun no Mon, is a famous landmark, a coal mountain that has been deeply excavated over the years. The city’s great mining past can be explored at the Tagawa City Mining History Museum, featuring historical objects, coal-mine models and a diorama, or at Mining History Park, with its a towering smokestacks. Another reminder of the city’s history is the reconstructed period homes, which bring the past alive for visitors.
The surrounding area’s natural beauty is not to be missed. Notable sights are Maruyama Park, with its 1000 sakura trees, and Jodo-ji Park, which takes on the color of its blossoming azalea in early May. Goyashonyu Cave provides a thrilling walk in the dark, and hikers will want to make the 30 minute walk from Tenshin-ji Shrine to the mountaintop at Taiho-san Park. To see a truly special performance, visit Iwakame Hachiman Shrine on January 1, when the puppet play Ikari has been performed annually since 1865, initially as a tribute to the gods to halt a terrible illness plaguing the region.
1-1 Chuo-machi, Tagawa City
Jinko-sai River Crossing Festival
5/14 (Sat.)~15 (Sun.)
Well-known throughout Fukuoka Prefecture, the Jinko-sai River Crossing Festival features groups of men carrying 11 portable shrines on their shoulders from Fuji Hachiman Shrine to Kawara Mountain. On their journey, the men cross Hikosan River, accompanied by traditional music and cries of support. A massive water fights breaks out among them as they cross, a lively part of a tradition that goes back 400 years.
Check it out!
Tagawa Museum of Art
A showcase for Chikuho art, the Tagawa Museum of Art exhibits mostly local artists. The Chikuho area’s first public art museum, it offers lectures and workshops with a local flavor.
11-56 Sinmachi, Tagawa
9:30-17:30 (enter before 17:00)
Toys of Past and Present-Masahiko Irie
Items for children, including toys, books and everyday items, collected by Masahiko Irie. From the Edo Period to modern times, the 400-item collection spans centuries of children’ culture.
Adults 600 yen, Students 300 yen, Children 100 yen